Husk by Rachel Autumn Deering
In this all-too-real work of horror fiction, Rachel Autumn Deering explores the mind of a young man who is struggling to cope with the effects of post-war stress, drug addiction, self-doubt, and loneliness as they manifest themselves into his deepest, darkest fears.
Kevin Brooks returns to his rural Kentucky hometown after a three-year-long tour of duty in Afghanistan. He has lost the grandparents who raised him, his lifelong best friend, and his trust in the government he once proudly served. When Kevin meets a kind, young girl named Samantha, he thinks his luck might have finally taken a turn for the better. But something else has its eye on Kevin. Something dark and brooding and mean. Something that knows Kevin better than he knows himself.
I finished the novella Husk by Rachel Autumn Deering last night before bed… and I am still jaw-dropped like whaaa?! AND LET’S TAKE A SECOND TO LOVE THIS COVER!
I was quickly drawn into this story with no problem whatsoever. Deering does a fantastic job with the way she built her characters up down to the dialect and how the characters acted. I grew up Southern Baptist with a preacher in my family so a lot of this rings close to home! It is impressive just how much Deering can draw you into the characters’ lives and what she accomplishes in so few pages.
Deering also does a wonderful job exploring PTSD post-war, drug addiction, and one man’s re-entry into the real world. You really get a sense of what the protagonist is going through and his state of mind in the present when we get a glimpse into his war-torn past.
Additionally, I loved the flirty, innocent, Southern, romance between Kevin and Samantha and just really loved this novella. That. Ending. Ugh! This was a tragic, heartbreaking, and haunting read. But I find myself in love with it nonetheless OR even more so because of that! We all need more Rachel Autumn Deering in our lives! She has a gift at psychological horror and I am so ready for whatever’s to come from her. 5 stars for HUSK!
About Rachel Autumn Deering
RACHEL AUTUMN DEERING is an Eisner and Harvey Award-nominated writer, editor, and book designer from the hills of Appalachia. Her debut prose novella, HUSK, was published in 2016 and drew praise from many critics and fellow writers. Her upcoming novel, Wytchwood Hollow, is set for publication in 2018.
She has also written, edited, lettered, designed, and published comics and short prose for DC/Vertigo Comics, Blizzard Entertainment, Dark Horse Comics, IDW, Cartoon Network, and more.
Deering is a rock ‘n’ roll witch with a heart of slime. She lives with a bunch of monster masks in suburban Michigan.